Sorry Facebook. Paddy Says – No Can Do!

Irish Paddy“How’s it going there FB? How’s the health? Wife not getting you down? Good. Good.

C’mere to me FB. I’ve been looking at all them new buttons and wigdets and “like” things you sent us t’other day and I wanted to run a few things past ya. To yer face as it were, coz, ya know, I didn’t want you getting the wrong idea.

We’ve always had a fairly descent friendship you and I. I’ve scratched your back and you’ve scratched mine, so to speak. I’ve given you my personal details, me pictures, videos, duck eggs when you wanted them and encouraged folks to go join that club of yours. I’ve even spread the word about your club with fliers and with them wee share buttons and “follow” buttons for the pages I have and I’ve even looked at all that daft advertising on the wall and the side of the page to, you know, offset your costs for all them waiters you’ve got working for you. What? Oh Servers? Servers…  Sorry.

In return, well, you know I’d ‘ve been happy with a few pints, but instead you’ve sent me the bit of traffic here and there. You know, the old eyeballs that have followed them share things to my sites. ‘N that’s been grand and all. Don’t get me wrong, but this new comments box?

Seriously, ‘tween yourself and meself – Your having a joke right? A bit of a lark? Yer taking the piss expecting folks like meself to stick that up on me site?

Don’t interrupt will ya. Let me finish. I know that Aussie, Duncan Riley at the Inquisitr, has done it, but what do ya expect? He’s not from around here.  He’s Australian, what do they know ya bleedin eejit? It’s all them barbecued Koala’s they eat. Does funny things to a man… Not like a good leg of lamb and some spuds.. Anyway.. where was I? Oh yes…

Do ya really need all the comments that Geraldine and Patrick leave on the internets being pumped in to your system there? Don’t ya think there’s a better way, I mean, I put a lot of work into my site. Had some bloke says he knows S&M and A.D.D. tell me the work was top notch ‘n all. He also told me that I could use some weird Japanese yoke, an “import” of some sort,  to get the XXL and move my stuff and all of Ger and Patricks words to a new site like Touch Pad, er, Type Pad? Although why he’d be thinking I’d want to give me stuff to one of those womens products companies is beyond me?

Anyhow, if I did use your commenting thingy, would the XXL still work? Would the Japanese fella be able to get the lads writin out and put it elsewhere?

Don’t look at me like that boy! I know I’m just a thick, shimple, country Paddy to you. But this Mick doesn’t like givin’ up control of what he’s worked bloody hard to develop and foster. Just like I won’t be sellin ole Maureen over there. Hand reared her I did. Good milkin cow…

So seriously. Are you takin the piss or what? Coz, you know I like you, always has a few pints with yerself and the misses, but I can’t be doing that if I have to give up me data and can’t get it back. ‘Twould be like when we gave Ma to the nursing home and they lost her. Still paying for the room we are, and a bloody year gone by since they lost her.

And the S&M fella would feckin kill me…”

The only vanity URL that matters is yours!

Forget Facebook, forget MySpace, forget Twitter

When it comes to branding yourself, when it comes to being found online, when it comes to making your mark on the internet the only URL that really matters is your own URL.

By that I mean the one that is your domain, your website or blog, your corner of the web.

Not your name on somebody else’s piece of the web, but your own place. Yours!

A sense of identity is important to all of us and the minds behind companies like Facebook know this.

They offer personalized URLs as a means to provide us with this sense of identity, with this sense of ownership, but they neglect to tell you that the sense of identity will be fleeting and that the sense of ownership is, at best, an illusion.

Companies come and go! How many social networks have risen and fallen in the past few years?

The crowd is fickle and when they move on to the next big thing, as they inevitably do, the networks die off, taking with them your content, your identity and everything you thought you owned.

As Anil Dash said in his post a few days ago, “Exclusive, the future of Facebook Usernames”:

A first wave of "It’s alive! Go get your name!" posts go up on various technology blogs, noting that the service is running a little bit slow. None of these posts mention that you can also register a real domain name that you can own, instead of just having another URL on Facebook.

If you really want to carve out your place on the web you have to secure your own domain and preferably your real name (not some made up name that you may not want, or may not fit 5 or 10 years down the road).

With your own domain you can have your own space on the web, where you are in control and you own everything. Nobody can take it away, nobody can change the rules, it’s your identity and your place.

Once you have that, run off and get your Facebook vanity URL (and again, choose one that identifies you and will still be valid in 5 years time – remember you are your brand) and use it to drive traffic to your domain and while you’re at it, aggregate your content from social networks into your domain so that you have it forever and always.

Make your mark. Claim your own territory on the web! Make it so that when your name is typed in on a search engine, it’s not some social network that comes up first, but you.

Your name, your domain, your identity. You!

Once you’ve secured “you” then it’s time to make friends!